Thanks to our regular donors and the support of those who sponsored riders on the last five Waterberg Trust Challenge Rides, TWT has been able to help a number of projects in the Waterberg:
Lapalala Wilderness School – Education in Conservation project
In 2017, The Waterberg Trust enabled 125 pupils from Vaalwater aged 12-17 to attend a three-day residential course at Lapalala Wilderness School where they learnt about nature conservation. TWT riders met some of these teenagers:
In February 2018, TWT enabled 60 teenagers and their teachers from Leseding Secondary School to go on a five-day residential course at Lapalala Wilderness School. TWT is sponsoring another group Meetsetshehla Secondary School to attend a course in March 2019.
Northern Education Trust – Roving School Nurse
TWT provides the salary for an experienced school nurse to work in and around Leseding Township to address social, health and educational issues faced by learners including teenage pregnancy and teenage motherhood as well as drug/alcohol abuse.
Nurse Grace has an office at Meetsetshehla Secondary School, which has 706 learners. Here she offers careers advice, takes life orientation classes and has set up a vegetable garden, which students care for.
Grace has been able to distribute donations of sports kit and bras from the UK along with washable sanitary pads from Dignity Dreams so that girls do not miss lessons when they have their periods. We are seeking funding for another 300 packs to equip all the school girls in Vaalwater.
Waterberg Welfare Society – Education and Welfare projects
In 2018 The Waterberg Trust paid the salary for a nurse to work at the WWS Hospice and on the HIV/Aids Stepping Forward project.
The nurse at the Waterberg Welfare Society with counsellors and patients
The Waterberg Trust continues to finance learner support programmes at the Waterberg Welfare Society to give local children a place to study with a qualified Maths mentor.
The Language and Homework Club ensures pupils graduating from primary schools, where lessons are given in SeSotho, can improve on their language and computer skills to make the most of their secondary education, which is taught in English. All pupils have improved by a grade.
Lethabo Kids Club’s ‘Back to School’ project
TWT grants have supported the ‘Back to School’ project at Letabo Kids Club, that has been run in the township of Leseding by Marilyn Cook for the last eighteen years. This ensures each child has a smart uniform, shoes, a book bag and place in school.
TWT supporters visited the project in 2016, 2017, 2018 and 2019. Kids Club is attended by 200-660 children each week and is an important point of contact with those in need.
Marilyn says, ‘Most requests are for school shoes.’ They cost about £10 a pair. She takes the children shopping to have them properly fitted. As soon as they are out-grown they get passed-on.
The youth who have grown up at Lethabo Kids Club now help as volunteers and have formed the Kholofelo Association who are seeking help to take them through tertiary education or start businesses.
The Northern Education Trust – Education Support projects
A grant was awarded to help with the university fees for an outstanding student called Donum Mandizvidza whose mother sadly died. She had been a teacher at the local secondary school. Donum was studying for a degree in Actuarial and Financial Mathematics at Pretoria University.
“I am driven and upon finishing my undergraduate I want to pursue my Postgraduate degree in Financial Mathematics while writing my board certification exams from ASSA (Actuarial Society of South Africa) and CFA (Chartered Financial Analyst) institute.”
Boschdraai Primary School
Donations of books and stationary were brought out by TWT riders in 2015 for Boshchdraai Primary School, which 140 children now attend.
TWT supporters have kindly bought gifts of pens and pencils.
The Waterberg Living Museum
TWT is supporting the Waterberg Living Museum established by Clive Walker and his son Anton Walker for local school children and visitors to the area by purchasing outdoor furniture and information boards.
Save The Waterberg Rhino – Conservation project
Thanks to those who sponsored Sam Whitbread and his friends on their Rickshaw Run through India, TWT was able to send £1,000 to Save The Waterberg Rhino for the purchase of equipment for the anti-poaching unit and local Police Force.
TWT is now helping Save The Waterberg Rhino to purchase high-tech security initiative equipment with a network of 34 night-vision cameras to help guard wilderness areas from the threat of poaching. They need to be erected on concrete poles:
This operation has been carefully thought through and implemented, maximising security in the whole area so that everyone benefits. It has been vital to get the right hardware, software and verification processes in place.
~TWT trustee visiting one of the security posts where WSI guards are based~
The security container purchased by The Waterberg Trust is being used as a staging post for WSI security patrols in the district, which operate on a 24 hour basis.
The Waterberg is home to the second highest population of rhino in the world and is under huge pressure from international poaching syndicates. We are doing what we can.
-TWT Riders observing white rhino-